Covestro and Tongji University jointly launch 2017 Innovation Day

Engaging together to incubate innovation collaboration across value chain
Covestro Tongji Innovation Day Peter Rothen, Dr. Markus Steilemann, Professor Wu Jiang, Dr. Liu Yan
From left to right: Peter Rothen, Consul General of Germany in Shanghai; Dr. Markus Steilemann, Board Member for Innovation and Chief Commercial Officer of Covestro; Professor Wu Jiang, Executive Vice President of Tongji University; Dr. Liu Yan, Shanghai Municipal Party Secretary of Science and Technology Committee at the inauguration ceremony of the Covestro-Tongji Innovation Academy.

Today, Covestro, a world-leading supplier of high-tech polymer materials, and Tongji University, one of China’s most prestigious universities, jointly held the 2017 Innovation Day and the inauguration ceremony of Covestro-Tongji Innovation Academy to launch the comprehensive strategic partnership, focusing on transportation and construction fields, where both parties are in leading position worldwide. A series of seminars under the theme of “Sustainable Mobility” were arranged on the Innovation Day, including lectures from the value chain experts with follow up interactions between Tongji University, industry players and Covestro customers.

“Tongji University, together with Covestro, is committed to supporting China’s transformation into an innovation-driven economy. Our long history of collaboration has made great strides in driving China’s indigenous innovation,” said Professor Wu Jiang, Executive Vice President of Tongji University. “The newly established Innovation Academy and the Innovation Day are an enhanced incubator aimed at fostering research projects in the transportation and construction fields, industrialization of new material technology and entrepreneurial ability among students and industry players.”

“Tongji University is one of our key partners in China. By intensifying our cooperation, we strive to turn technology innovation outcomes into market values,” Dr. Markus Steilemann, Board Member for Innovation and Chief Commercial Officer of Covestro added. “The new Innovation Academy with its focus on the construction and transportation industries is to become a powerhouse, accelerating development and commercialization of new technologies.”

“Germany wants to continue to be a strong partner of China in the field of innovation. Germany wants to stay open to cooperation with China in the most advanced high-tech areas as we – the German Government and in particular our German companies – have proven time and again, also by transferring more and more R&D capacities to China,” said Peter Rothen, Consul General of Germany in Shanghai. “But in order to be able to do so, we also need the lifting of unnecessary restrictions for foreign companies, we need to get quickly to a truly level playing field between foreign and local companies.”

With the joint efforts from Covestro and Tongji University, the Innovation Day will serve as an open innovation platform, embracing partners across the industry value chains to exchange ideas and incubate collaboration, in response to challenges that affect China to a considerable degree, for example, growing mobility or fast urbanizations. Under the theme of “Sustainable Mobility”, the 2017 Innovation Day offered a series of high level seminars and panel discussion focusing on the transportation sector, including the development trends of electric cars and internet transportation. On the other hand, the Innovation Academy is an expanded collaboration based on the foundation of the first successful five-year partnership of the Covestro-Tongji Eco-Construction & Material Academy collaboration, operating under the new name and new mechanism. The Academy aims to explore and promote innovative industry-academia cooperation which focuses on industrializing innovation outcomes in the areas of transportation and construction.

“In recent years, Shanghai has been spearheading efforts to develop itself into an innovation-driven metropolis and a major global entrepreneurial hub,” Dr. Liu Yan, Shanghai Municipal Party Secretary of Science and Technology Committee added. “The Covestro-Tongji Innovation Academy itself is a very creative industry-academia cooperation model which will play a pivotal role in driving China’s innovation eco-system through education, research projects and talent development.”

About Covestro:

With 2016 sales of EUR 11.9 billion, Covestro is among the world’s largest polymer companies. Business activities are focused on the manufacture of high-tech polymer materials and the development of innovative solutions for products used in many areas of daily life. The main segments served are the automotive, construction, wood processing and furniture, and electrical and electronics industries. Other sectors include sports and leisure, cosmetics, health and the chemical industry itself. Covestro, formerly Bayer MaterialScience, has 30 production sites worldwide and employs approximately 15,600 people (calculated as full-time equivalents) at the end of 2016.

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